1. What is the link between physical activity and human brain
2. How has human brain evolution enabled us to emotionally
engage and anticipate the intentions of others?
Many cortical areas are involved in initiating a movement.
Brain regions and functions
Let's not forget that humans also gained endurance by running from predators.
Humans have a brain that is about three times the size that would be
expected, given our body size in comparison with that of other mammals.
Physical activity made our brains human
June 22, 2011
Exercise increases ‘neurogenesis’
(growth of neurons) in the
hippocampus - a region important for
memory and implicated in cognitive
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A 104(13):5638-43 (2007).
Warmer colours indicate higher
levels of nerve growth factor in the
hippocampus of [A] exercising
animals compared to [B] sedentary
- blue indicates the lowest level.
Fitness training increases neurogenesis
Group behaviours (social contagion)
THE SOCIAL BRAIN & THE MIRROR NEURON
Mirror neurons are a means of understanding another’s intentions and are not just
about copying actions. They form a part of our capacity to understand others and
empathise with them.
The mirror neuron system enables us to engage with others
Science, 325, 5938, 284, 2009.
Empathy is facilitated when we share attention.
The social brain and the mirror neuron system
“Fortune favours the prepared mind.” - Louis Pasteur.
Mind set Skills Education
Interesting books in this area
1. Physical endurance drives human brain evolution by promoting
2. The evolution of the brain mirror neuron system enables us to
respond sympathetically and to anticipate the intentions of